Of course, I am pissed off with the development. There is no infrastructure to speak off. Hence even though I know that broadband came in picture in and around 2004, it’s been over 6 years and we are hardly seeing any traction in the space as far as the speeds and/or prices are concerned.
Hence it is to have them admit on paper that the prices have “stagnated” indeed. 256 kbps is nothing in this day and age when the speeds elsewhere have touched over Gigabits.
The “perfect pricing” can always be debated. I would root for ATLEAST 2 mbps for INR 700-900 price band. This of course has to come with any stupid “fair usage policy”. In any case, wherever there is abuse of the network, they ought to ask the customer to perhaps a higher speed band.
Network abuse is in built and the very idea that traffic is being monitored ought to be deterrent enough. In any case, even with the restricted traffic shaping, I hardly see any traction in the space; it is an awful experience to stream the videos or access data intensive web sites.
If majority of the user space in India centers on Social Networking/Matrimonial sites and email, I don’t foresee any “overloading” of the networks. If they are really interested in lowering the overall costs, then they have to explore alternatives like NIXI to peer the data amongst themselves or cache the data for faster access.
Why BSNL then? Foremost reason is that I am it’s customer. Secondly, it can be alleged that because of it’s “monopolistic stance”, the real “revolution” in speeds and prices has to come only after goading it to work. If BSNL as the “market leader” is made to act on prices being offered, others have to match up to it. Well, thats what the intention in the long run is.
One more thing. I have specifically asked for the various break up charges. I strongly feel that the charges ought to be in public domain. How much is BSNL really affected? It is buying bandwidth from upstream and distributing it (apart from owning it’s own gateways, if I am not mistaken). One ought to know how much it really costs to move gigabytes of data on it’s pipes. In the same vein, RTI filed with TRAI previously was very clear that there is nothing like “Fair Usage Policy”. Hence it would at least force BSNL to acknowledge that FUP is “illegal” and help is to fix a responsibility as to who has come up with the idea. He/She should be hauled up over the coals.
Hence this is truly a disruptive power of RTI to expose the cosy nexus between the various ISP’s because they are defrauding their customers. One particular issue that caught my eye was FTH service being advertised as “upto 1 Mbps” and being more expensive than the same service being offered by DSL. Hence, I have asked them for an explanation about the same and the differential in pricing. FTH is not being advertised heavily which has the real potential for future.
I am also keen to know about the “limitation of upload speeds” of 768 kbps (as per their web site); I feel that this is an artificial restriction and should have their response on “traffic shaping”.
It is very clear from the outset that much of the information would be withheld, not revealed etc etc. Hence the best option is to wait, file an appeal and then present the case strongly in the state information commission.
I am willing to fight it out.